Nikon ME-1 microphone now available for pre-order

B&H listed the new Nikon ME-1 microphone as availabel for pre-order today which usually means shipment should start in the next 1-2 weeks:

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  • Azmir


  • Very expensive!

    • PiXLPeeper

      Wat too expensive, wouldn’t buy for half the price shown 🙁

  • D700guy

    Not a necessary item for me until I own a rig with video.

  • Trevor

    I know there is really no ideal post for this question, so I’ll just post it hoping for responses (and sorry for being a little off topic). To any cinematographers out there, is a DSLR advantageous over a purpose-built video camera?

    I know NOTHING of cinematography, but it seems odd to me that so many people clamor for video features (4k whatever that is) on what is, by its nature, a still camera. If you shoot video for more than just family and friends, wouldn’t you rather have a purpose-built camera than a D7000, D5100, GH2, or even 5d Mk II? If not, what advantage does a DSLR have that a purpose-built video camera lacks (and why would they lack that)?

    I understand, of course, that having the convenience of both cameras in one is nice (I could see it especially nice for weddings), but if you’re serious about cinematography, don’t they build better gear for that specifically, or no?

    Thanks for any insight!

    • eeeeeeee

      interchangeable lens, depth of field, low light ability, cost.

      • ESPECIALLY low light ability. Those camcorders don’t even come close.

      • danpe

        I can fully agree with cost and in the D3s case low light ability. But there are several video camera systems available with m43 to 35 mm sizes and a wide range of lenses (via adapters, much less hassle when you’re doing manual exposure and focus anyway). NEX-VG10 and Panasonic AG-AF100 among the “cheap” and then onwards to higher end units like the ones from RED and SONY CineAlta.

        4k is horizontal resolution. Ergonomics differ a lot going from a video camera to a DSLR. Size and weight in favor of DSLR.

      • Trevor

        Thanks all! Sounds like DSLRs really are a leg up on other stuff in a lot of ways. It doesn’t do it for me, but now I get why there are so many comments for things like 25/30/60 frames.

        • big eater

          Partly it’s the fact that you can get a film look without renting a Panavision camera and burning up thousands of feet of film, but it’s also fun for creative people to get a new tool to work with. The lenses are also cheaper by a factor of 10 or more.

          As far as costs, it seems like the more I learn, the more I see that there’s still no such thing as a free lunch. The camera may be a little cheaper, but the cost of everything attached to the camera is the same as in film and video.
          In video and film, the cost of the actual camera and recording media is insignificant in comparison to the cost of the microphones, tripods (the price of a movie tripod makes Gitzo prices look cheap) , dollys, dolly tracks, cherry pickers, Chapman cranes, shoulder supports, brackets, extensions, HMIs, butterflies, cycs, and all the other gadgetry required to make broadcast- or studio-quality productions that people will pay actual money to see (as opposed to just watch on the internet for free).

          And regardless of the platform, DSLR or video or film, you need a number of people for a truly high-quality production including a sound engineer, lighting people, and one person whose whole job is just to focus the camera while it’s running.

          • SZRimaging

            That all depends on the scale/aim of the production. I have personally made stuff on my own, and I know of other local guys who can do it by themselves and only require help on larger productions. If all I have is a talking head with a lav or handheld, I can easily do it all myself. Add in a few B-Roll type shots, and you need two people tops. Works well for a lot of small/local productions for small/cheap businesses.

            • Trevor

              Aaaaaaand this puts into perspective my want for a spare battery. 🙂

      • gt

        I disagree that cost is an advatage. After you buy all the necessary accessories to use a dslr like a proper video camera, it gets rather expensive. don’t forget the cost of quality glass + the camera itself.

        • PHB

          In theory a purpose made camera should be better than an adapted stills camera. And that is still true for the low end. If you want to get a good videocam that does HD, get a Canon Vixia for $350. Its terrific and works better than anything you could get three years ago at any price and better than about half the pro video-cams on the market.

          I bought my first Vixia two years ago for $900, it was a bargain then, I just got a new one and its better still.

          If you want to go beyond the capabilities of the Vixia, it is really difficult unless you spend for the Red. The mid market dedicated VideoCams are terrible. You have to spend a bundle to get interchangeable lenses. Most are still obsolete tape based systems. Like come on guys, this is 2011, not 2005, who wants tape?

          The result is that there is a huge mid range market for DSLR videocams for pro work. The ergonomics of the systems pretty much suck, but so do the ergonomics of the tape based pro videocams.

          But the DSLRs are still sub-optimal. They can’t record above HD resolution, they have MPEG4 codecs, not MPEG 2. They can only shoot for limited times. The lenses are not designed for video so they breathe when zoomed. They don’t have motorized zoom.

          My expectation is that the EVIL format will be the preferred video format.

          • Trevor

            Great response. Thanks PHB!

          • Besides some Red cams, CineAlta, and a couple other pieces of industry gear, what on earth shoots above 1080?!

        • Mock Kenwell

          Not true. If you compare system to system, a DSLR set-up is MILES cheaper. And if you need to take stills as well, it’s all in one far more compact package. Yes, you have to steady that tiny DSLR and some are more ergonomically feasible than others, but you can get a range of looks that would cost you 10x to achieve otherwise. It’s also cheaper to ship and travel your gear. You need to look at the total cost.

          • big eater

            The other factor in favor of DSLR videos is the unmistakable look of Nikkor lenses. Cinematographers are obsessed with lenses because of the range of emotions and moods they can express with them.
            If you’re a true and loyal Nikon shooter, you probably own 5 to 10 awesome pieces of glass. So when you combine video with the unique look of Nikkor, you’ve really got something. Think about the cool effects you could create with a 24mm TS lens, or the 105 macro, the 135mm DC, or the 800mm 5.6; these lenses can get you places that it would be difficult or impossible to get with a regular video camera.

  • Anyone know how it stacks up against the Rode mics?

    • Mock Kenwell

      Not comparable. This thing is over-priced.

  • broxibear
  • B&H will close on April 17 and will not reopen until the 27th. That could complicate things with regard to this item.

  • Rx4Photo

    Preordering only feuls anticipation and frustration. Why? Because we still want it t TOMORROW! I refuse to preorder anything after dealing with preordering the D7000. From now on, when the product’s in stock – that’s when I’ll order it!

  • The Man from Mandrem

    Out of curiousity, does Nikon actually make this or they source the microphone from somewhere else?

    • Nikon doesn’t make or design mics–I’m sure they’ve sourced the parts from someone else. My guess: Pany or Sony. They buy some things from both and they both make mics, so that’s my guess. Sony has a few patents on compact stereo mics, so that’s my guess.

  • ja

    where is this annoucment that was mentioned for the 8th of april , i think someone is telling porkies just to keep us hooked

    • I never said anything about a potential April 8th announcement – you must have read it someplace else.

  • Jivee

    Id like to see how this compares with a rode or sennheiser mic? The me1 is rather small compared to the former that require battery power in the mic.

  • Is there somewhere any sample videos with Nikon ME-1?

  • Is there another stereo mic on the market that is easily mounted on an DSLR ?

  • Darth

    Nope, this is the only one. Even if there was one it wouldn’t be as good as Nikon’s.

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